Friday, October 02, 2009
USC Gamecocks v SCSU Bulldogs Preview / Prediction
These two schools are a mere 34 miles apart and this is only their second time playing each other in the history of college football. South Carolina State University (SCSU) is no push over or should not be viewed as an “easy win.” The Bulldogs are currently ranked 16th in the country in FCS and finished the regular season last year with a 10-3 record. So what is important for the team from Columbia is not to overlook the bulldogs from Orangeburg, South Carolina.
A win Saturday for Carolina would give the Gamecocks a 5-game winning streak at Williams-Brice Stadium. Also it would add to Coach Spurrier’s career record versus teams from non-BCS conferences which currently stands at 37-0 and 18-6 against teams from the Palmetto State.
The most important thing again is for Carolina not to go into this game thinking it will be a breeze as even the Ol’ Ball Coach has stated it will be a “dog fight.”
SCSU offense v USC Defense: The bulldogs bring to Columbia a team that is averaging 28 points a game and just defeated Winston-Salem State 27-10 at home to improve to 3-0 on the season. They are not a team that makes a lot of mistakes as they only have turned the ball over 4 times all year on offense. So they are disciplined and bring a balanced attack with an average of 190 through the air and 153 on the ground. They are lead by their QB Malcolm Long who has thrown 4 TDs with only 1 INT thus far. He has passed for 523 yds. Mr. Long likes to target WR OliverTre Young who has 19 catches for 245 yds. When trying to run the ball, their guy is RB William Ford. He has carried the ball 49 times for 265 yds and 2 TDs. Their weakness this week may lie in the offensive line and look for USC to be aggressive in their hunt for Long. USC will blanket their wideout Mr. Young and look to force the Qb to throw to someone else. The SC defense will try to slow the rushing attack as SCSU wants to establish the run. Look for USC’s defense to again be lights out as they want to build upon the Ole Miss win. Should be fun to watch SCSU’s O-line vs USC’s D-line.
SCSU Defense vs. USC Offense: The playmakers for SCSU are: David Erby with 26.5 tackles (22 solo); Julius Wilkerson 13.5 tackles (8 solo) and Jayson Ayers at DE. They do a lot of the right things and can cause turnovers. Look for South Carolina to come out ready to establish the run in this game. I feel the “running back by committee” that Carolina uses will get plenty of turns in this game. Garcia is a little banged up with his ribs so it is crucial for him not to get exposed too much this game. The other thing to watch for is the occasional testing of the deep ball. Spurrier will want to air it out a few times and it will be worth watching to see if USC can get open down field and SC not throw dumb passes. Expect to see Gurley, Barnes and Saunders getting plenty of looks. But don’t forget about Moe Brown and LeCron. I can see everyone getting involved this game.
Basically, I feel this game will be a normal game for Carolina…one that is about ball control, field position, no TOs, great defense and a balanced offensive attack. Not a lot of flash in this game but hope I am wrong because a blow-out by USC will do wonders for the team after the Ole Miss win. I do not want to watch a close game and this game should not be close. Must avoid the let down! USC should be just simply too much for SCSU to handle. And with that I can see USC winning this game by 3-4 scores with the possible outcome sounding like 38-10 in favor of the Gamecocks.